Besides being of interest to scientists, philosophers and sociologists, the issue of cloning is of major concern to psychoanalysts, since the idea of producing an exact copy of a human being touches the very basis of psychoanalysis: sexuality, identification, narcissism, etc.
Michel Neyraut, a psychiatrist and psychoanalyst, reflects here on the issues raised by the prospect of human cloning, both for the discipline and, above all, for people. He discusses three different aspects of the problem: the possible involvement of "operative thinking" (in the psychosomatic sense), the construction of a "family story" based on the illusion of an "exact copy", and the opening up of the potential for the limitless narcissistic reproduction of an individual or a group.
This article shows how essential it is, in the debate on cloning, to take into account all aspects of the question, above all the possible psychological impact on those directly affected by the technique. Hence the importance of an interdisciplinary approach - in this debate, as in any that involves the relationship between science and society.